Qualcomm makes play for high-end devices with Snapdragon 800 and 600

Qualcomm makes play for high-end devices with Snapdragon 800 and 600

Summary: Qualcomm takes the already excellent Snapdragon line of mobile silicon and gives it a serious performance boost with the new Snapdragon 800 and 600 chipsets.


Forget about processor gigahertz on the desktop or notebook, the real action nowadays in inside smartphones and tablets. One of the biggest players in the mobile space is Qualcomm, and its newest batch of Snapdragon silicon indicates that the company has its eye on a spot inside tomorrow's high-end devices.

The company unveiled two new chipsets at CES 2013: the Snapdragon 800 and 600.

The Snapdragon 800 is Qualcomm's new high-end offering. According to the specs, it is 75 percent faster than the S4 Pro, making it a seriously powerful piece of kit.

Along with the performance boost, the Snapdragon 800 also features the new quad-core Krait 400 architecture running at a maximum of 2.3GHz, a new Hexagon V5 digital signal processor, a new Adreno 330 GPU which is twice as fast as the Adreno 320 GPU in the S4 Pro, and support for 800MHz LPDDR3 memory as well as 4G LTE.

The Snapdragon 800 has enough horsepower to capture and play back 4K video at 30fps, and 2K video at 60fps, plus offering support for 7.1 channel DTS-HD and DD Plus audio standards.

The Snapdragon 800 is expected to make an appearance inside devices by mid-2013.

The other processor is the Snapdragon 600. While not as fast as the Snapdragon 800, the Snapdragon 600 is no slouch, and offers 40 percent more performance than the S4 Pro at lower power consumption.

See alsoIntel should dump x86 and make ARM chips, says executive

The Snapdragon 600 features a new quad-core Krait 300 architecture with speeds up to 1.9GHz, a new Adreno 320 GPU and support for LPDDR3 memory.

According to Qualcomm, devices running Snapdragon 600 should be available by the second quarter of 2013.

"With the overwhelming success of our previous Qualcomm Snapdragon platforms, our mobile processors have emerged as the platform of choice for high-end mobile devices," said Steve Mollenkopf, president and chief operating officer of Qualcomm. "With more than 50 design wins already secured with the first products of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 and 800 processors, we are advancing our vision and setting the standard for excellence in mobile computing."

Image source: Qualcomm.

Topics: Processors, Hardware, Smartphones, Tablets

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • Our Mobile Devices Are Leaving Our TVs Behind

    How will we watch this new world of UHD video? Will it still be in the living-room at all? Or will something more like AR glasses turn out to be more cost-effective than large physical screens?
    • TV's will always trump mobile devices

      for watching content. Given the choice between watching a show on a large flat screen vs. watching it on a tiny mobile device like a smartphone, the TV always wins.

      Glasses also have a massive disadvantage that TVs don't: they block out everything else in the room. TV's let you enjoy the program while interacting with everyone or everything else in the room.
      NoMore MicrosoftEver
  • Its not astonishing.

    That could be done years earlier BUT for the cost of battery life.

    The biggest race is not for making most powerful chips, but for doing it WHILE preserving battery life.

    So its a bit different kind of game than non-mobile chips. And its also reason why ARM derived chips have advantage over Intel offerings, and why Intel as company is perceived as newcomer.

    And unfortunately, battery's pace of innovation is not great. So no big breakthroughs can be seen in near future. (Or some cheating by making more powerful chips but for cost of less battery time).

    Btw. No info about battery life?